8 tips to exercising in your car!
It?s the New Year, and you know what that means... time to implement those New Years resolutions! It never fails, every year you can bet the number one New Years resolution amongst Canadians is to lose weight. You could also bet that 40% of these resolution makers will fail by February, only one month after they are made.
Why can't Canadians stay focused on weight loss for more than a month? Is it because we?re too busy? We just ?don?t have the time??. According to Statistics Canada a quarter of Canadians commuting in both Toronto and Montreal spend on average 45 minutes or more in traffic to and from work. That?s an hour and a half of your day! Chances are after your 8 hour work day and accumulated hour and a half commute, hunger, exhaustion and the kids take precedence over the gym.
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Every time I am frustrated sitting in traffic, I think to myself, there is so much I could have gotten done in this hour.? I finally decided to get a head start on my work-out while in the car. By the time I get home all that is left to do is 30 minutes of cardio!
8 simple tips on how to lose weight while in your car:
1. A very important part of exercise is stretching. Before you even get into your car take a good stretch right outside of it. Your legs, your arms, everything. When you get in your car, put the seatbelt on and do some head rolls. This will exercise your neck. We hold a lot of our tension from stress in our necks, especially from a long day at work. Roll your head around softly in a circular motion to stretch out all of that tension.
2. Go to your local retailer and purchase some light wrist weights. You can get them from 2 to 10 pounds and depending where you buy them prices can range from $5.00-$30.00.
Wrist weights are worn as bracelets and do not obstruct your ability to keep your hands on the wheel! Keep them in your glove compartment and put them on when you get in the car. When you?re at a red light or stuck in 5km/hour traffic, lift one arm up from your waist to your chest repeatedly. Hold the steering wheel with your opposite hand. The weights will cause resistance and allow you to work out your biceps.
Now that you have your wrist weights on, it?s time to do some bicep curls
. Place your hands lower on your steering wheel and pull your body toward the wheel while flexing your biceps. This is a great exercise because you are still completely focused on the road and your hands are safely on the wheel.
Do this 60 times or until you feel your biceps start to burn. No pain no gain!
4. Butt flexes
. You spent all day sitting at a desk and now you?re sitting in a car. Your poor bum wants to move! Put on some music and squeeze that booty to the beat! You can train yourself to subconsciously flex your cheeks often enough that you won?t even realize you?re doing it anymore. Squeeze tight and release repeatedly and don?t stop until your butt muscles feel fatigued! I?m not even going to lie; I?m flexing right now.
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5. Ab flexing
. This is actually something you can do while walking, sitting at your desk AND in your car. You should constantly be flexing your stomach muscles! Not only is it a great abdomen work out; but flexing your stomach muscles actually contributes to better posture! Usually I flex my stomach muscles until they start to get noticeably tired. That?s when you really know it?s working.
Get silly! Download fun and upbeat music to your phone. You could also type in ?workout playlist? on Youtube and get a list of 30 minute to 1 hour dance songs. Who cares what the people in cars around you think? You?ll never see them again anyways.
?Drink lots of?water
! Exercise is not just about moving your body and sweating. A huge part of being healthy is how much water we drink every day.
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Sometimes headaches can be caused merely because we haven?t hydrated ourselves enough. You should be drinking around 600ml of water every hour.This may be difficult to remember when your mind is distracted all day. A smart idea is to keep a case of water in your vehicle because it?s a constant reminder that you need to drink! It?s always there if you forget to fill your re-usable water bottle. Grab one before you begin your commute and keep it in your cup holder.
Remembering to take deep, long breaths. It is healthy for your mind, body and soul. Inhale through your nose and out through your mouth. Do it right now and see how different you feel. Breathing is simple and easy yet we constantly forget to give ourselves nice deep breaths! Breathing might even help calm your road rage. And yes, you probably have just a little bit of road rage.
The most common difficulty people have with setting weight loss goals is staying motivated. Life catches up to you. You?re exhausted; you have many responsibilities and not enough time. Maintain that motivation by keeping a bag of workout clothes in your car. When it?s time to leave work change into them right away! If you already have your work out clothes on when you get home, you?ll be more inclined to finish your workout.
Car exercises can make that dreadful commute to work a little more fun. They make you feel a lot more stress-free and productive! Work around your lifestyle and find little ways to stay focused on your fitness. Good luck and Happy New Year!
By Amandalina Letterio
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